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South Carolina star GG Jackson declares for NBA Draft

As expected.

Syndication: The Knoxville News-Sentinel Brianna Paciorka/News Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

After just one season with the Gamecocks, star forward GG Jackson will begin the professional chapter of his basketball career.

The 6-foot-9, 215-pound freshman averaged 15.4 points and 5.9 rebounds per game, good enough to lead the squad and net him a spot on the SEC’s All-Freshman team. Jackson, who was a one-time North Carolina commitment before spurning the Tar Heels for his home state program, was a five-star recruit and rated South Carolina’s top prospect coming out of high school.

Similarly, Jackson projects well to the NBA, with most analysts placing him outside of the lottery picks but still within the draft’s first round. If selected, Jackson would be the first Gamecock drafted since Sindarius Thornwell in 2017, and the program’s first first-round choice since Renaldo Balkman in 2006.

Although Jackson’s announcement hardly comes as a shock, he was one of the few bright spots in an otherwise dismal 11-21 campaign. The Gamecocks and coach Lamont Paris, entering his second season, must now figure out how life looks after GG Jackson.